Tonights View of the Sky – October 16th – Part 1
I wasn’t expecting much last night as the weather forecast called for poor stargazing conditions, but for an hour or so the clouds cleared and I took this opportunity to take a few photos and to try and spot my next targets, Mirphak (Aplha Persei), Algenib (Gamma Persei) and Miram (Eta Persei)
I think I have finally nailed the camera settings need in order to get a good photo of the night sky. Below are some samples of pictures I got last night.
Camera Settings – 30 sec to 60 sec exposure – Aperture F4 – ISO 1600
The photos were brought into Photoshop and the following adjustment layers added – Levels, Curves, Selective Color and Brightness / Contrast
When I examined the photos I started noticing details I missed with the naked eye. So many in fact that this post on the sky tonight will be split into 4 parts in order to cover the objects of interest.
MainÂ Targets – Mirphak, Algenib and Miram
Before I went out viewing tonight I had earmarked 3 stars I would like to identify Mirphak, Algenib and Miram. The photo I captured below got a good view of these stars.
Miram is located 1331 lights years from earth and is 35,000 times brighter than our sun. It is part of the Perseus constellation
Algenib (Gamma Persei)
Algenib or Gamma Persei is a binary star system, the system is approx. 243 light years from Earth, the combined brightness of this system makes it the 4th brightest member of the Perseus constellation.
Mirphak (Alpha Persei)
Mirphak is the brightest star in the PerseusÂ constellation. It is 510 light years from earth and is a supergiant star in the latter stages of its life. It is about 60 times the mass of our sun and almost 5000 times as bright.
Coming up in Part 2
So my primary goal had being accomplished I managed to spot these 3 stars and photograph them, but as I mentioned earlier in my post the photos I took showed up more details than I could have hoped for and will go through these over the next 3 parts. Part 2 will focus on the Andromeda galaxy and surrounding stars.